Shane Woodford | Email news tips to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Coast Guard union is accusing the federal government of rooting out, and getting rid of, any opposition to the closure of Kitsilano Coast Guard base.
Union leader Dave Clark says a memo from Coast Guard Commissioner Marc Gregoire shows what lengths the feds went to, to close Kits base.
Clark says Western Region Assistant Commissioner Vija Poruks was removed for not moving fast enough to shut the base down.
"They have placed in this fellow that was already retired from Atlantic Canada and he made the decision to shut Kits base. The people that made the decision to close Kits base are running like rats off a ship. It looks like people didn't actually want to close it and the government got rid of them."
In the memo Gregoire says Gary Sidock has been on the job as Assistant Commissioner since January and will return to Atlantic Canada to retire next week.
The memo says Poruks is leaving the Coast Guard entirely.
Kits base was closed February 19th during the unveliling of the latest BC budget with no notice given to the Provincial government or to mariners.
The memo in full is attached below.
I am writing to you regarding some changes in the Office of the Assistant Commissioner, Western Region.
Vija Poruks recently announced that she will be leaving the Canadian Coast Guard. As a result, an open competition will be held to recruit a new Assistant Commissioner, Western Region.
Gary Sidock has been Acting Assistant Commissioner since January 7th and will remain in this role until March 13th. Following this assignment, Gary will return to the East Coast and retire from the Canadian Coast Guard and the Public Service of Canada shortly thereafter.
In the interim, Denis Sing, Director General of Integrated Business Management Services will be Acting Assistant Commissioner, Western Region from March 14th to April 12th. This period may be adjusted depending on operational requirements.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank both Vija and Gary for their years of service to Coast Guard and would kindly ask that you give Denis Sing a warm welcome to the Western Region team and your full support. I will provide you with another update once the competition for a new Assistant Commissioner, Western Region has been concluded.